What are you up to this weekend?
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I'm excited to have an entire day to spend in the kitchen. I've got a stack(!) of recipes I'm going to be testing .. along with 2 tubs(!) of the coolest Vintage and Retro bakeware .. plates .. bowls .. you name it.
All week-long I've had to say .. “Sweetie .. the day was busy and I didn't make anything new for dinner.” So instead of something from the freezer .. or one of our quick and easy go-tos .. it'll be wonderful to light a few candles .. turn on some jazz .. and catch up over something hot and bubbly ..
straight out of the oven
The bakeware? A fun find from the week .. the best store for all things Vintage and Retro. With a couple of hours to kill before my photography class .. I found myself wandering through antique stores in Des Moines' Valley Junction.
As my wish stack grew taller .. it became clear he'd found a kindred spirit.
And thus began the most fascinating of lessons on the history of dishware .. designers .. what makes a piece valuable .. colors and patterns that date an era .. odd treasures like Vaseline Glass .. and vintage styles like Danish Modern.
He bid me farewell a couple of hours later .. in my arms I carried tubs filled with treasures.
“Take them home .. try them out. Return what you don't want .. pay for only what you love”
“Are you sure? I mean .. you don't know me”
“Something tells me it'll be ok”
The first weekend of November begs a recipe for chili.
(For those who follow The Veggies .. a recipe and story from the archives. Originally posted in December of 2013 .. as a contribution to our Holiday Tradition's Food Swap. It's my favorite)
The theme of last weekend's food swap ..
Webster defines tradition as ..
The handing down of statements, beliefs, legends, customs, information, etc., from generation to generation, especially by word of mouth or by practice
For some swappers .. this was easy
“My Grandma always makes a, b, & c when we go to her house on Christmas day .. I've got her recipe .. but somehow it just never tastes quite as good as hers”
I didn't have a go-to at the ready .. My family less than traditional in so many ways .. by no means a negative .. In fact .. I've come to embrace my truth that life's roads will be outside the norm ..
The Chef & I .. establishing new traditions this year .. those that are our own .. purposed .. what do we want .. as opposed to .. this is just what you do
One afternoon I passed by the calendar .. a number of party invitations coming up .. a couple on Christmas Eve night .. both mentioned ..
“We'll have a pot of chili on the stove .. come .. have a bowl and let us enjoy your company”
I couldn't resist .. because isn't that really what it's all about? Whether you're in a family that has long-established roots & traditions .. new people may join .. some may leave .. but the traditions always live on
Your family is just getting started .. new traditions formed
Your family at the holidays is a wonderful group of friends
Any combination of the above
To me .. chili .. begs my favorite notion ..
“Come .. whoever you are .. whatever your life situation .. and let us enjoy your company”
ps: This has been my favorite chili recipe for as long as I can remember .. it's not fancy .. but very much full of flavor .. incredibly thick & hearty. Whatever you do .. don't leave out the corn flour .. it really adds to its character
~ Adapted from The Pioneer Woman .. here
- 2 lbs ground beef
- 2 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1 8 oz can tomato sauce
- 2 15 oz cans fire roasted tomatoes (diced or crushed depending on the chunkiness level you like)
- 2 Tbsp chili powder (** heat of your choice)
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp ground oregano
- 1 tsp fine gran sea salt
- heavy pinch freshly ground black pepper
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
- ¼ cup masa harina (corn flour, found in the Mexican food section of many supermarkets)
- 2 15 oz cans chili beans in chili sauce (I use Mrs Grimes)
- Shredded Cheddar, for serving
- Chopped onions, for serving
- Fritos, for serving
- In a large pot over medium heat, add the olive oil and chopped onions.
- Sauté 3-5 minutes, until the onions are beginning to soften.
- Add the ground beef and garlic and continue to cook until the meat is browned.
- Drain the excess fat.
- Add the tomato sauce, canned tomatoes, chili beans, chili powder, cumin, oregano, sea salt, freshly ground black pepper, and cayenne.
- Stir well, cover, and reduce the heat to low.
- Simmer for about an hour, stirring occasionally. If the chili becomes overly dry, add ½ cup water at a time .. as needed.
- After an hour, combine the corn flour with ½ cup water.
- Add the masa mixture to the chili.
- Stir together well, taste, and adjust the seasonings.
- Add more masa paste and /or water until the chili to your preferred consistency
- Serve with shredded cheddar, chopped onions, and fritos
% Protein: 39
% Carbs: 22
% Fat: 36
** Nutritional data figured without any add-ons